Monday, August 23, 2010

Labor Day 2010

I'm warming up to Labor Day this year on my bicycle, crossing New York State. I'll be camping and hopefully enjoying the Erie Canal route that took so much money, sweat and commitment to build. 

Labor Day in our time is the end of Summer, the last weekend to go out and swim, boat or do whatever. 

Here are a few things to tuck away for a quiet moment when you can think about how this day came to be celebrated.
The first Labor Day in the United States was celebrated on September 5, 1882 in New York City. In the aftermath of the deaths of a number of workers at the hands of the US military and US Marshals during the 1894 Pullman Strike, President Grover Cleveland put reconciliation with Labor as a top political priority. Fearing further conflict, legislation making Labor Day a national holiday was rushed through Congress unanimously and signed into law a mere six days after the end of the strike. Cleveland was also concerned that aligning a US labor holiday with existing international May Day celebrations would stir up negative emotions linked to the Haymarket Affair.[3] All 50 U.S. states have made Labor Day a state holiday.
The form for the celebration of Labor Day was outlined in the first proposal of the holiday: A street parade to exhibit to the public "the strength and esprit corps of the trade and labor organizations," followed by a festival for the workers and their families. This became the pattern for Labor Day celebrations. Speeches by prominent men and women were introduced later, as more emphasis was placed upon the economic and civil significance of the holiday. Still later, by a resolution of the American Federation of Labor convention of 1909, the Sunday preceding Labor Day was adopted as Labor Sunday and dedicated to the spiritual and educational aspects of the labor movement.
American labor is not strong these days. In fact, this is one of the worst times for workers to get any respect or recognition in our country. Over the past 50 years, wealth-holders and management has undercut the credibility and legal rights of workers to bargain for anything. 

However, in the 1950's through 1970's, when labor was strong, we had the most vibrant economy in our history. This is not a contradiction or a fluke, although it takes some thinking to see the reason clearly.

When the wealth holders gain from productive activities is balanced with the gains of workers  the economy as a whole prospers. The reason is the less-well-off workers spend more of their share on buying more goods and the wealthy spend less. This drives the economy in a healthy way to more prosperity. The balance is the key and it is what has been lost.

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Yoga-nomics: What's going on?

  Yoga is arguably about integration. Aside from a misunderstanding in America about what exactly is integrated, we also have a lack of understanding about the way our monetary system is integrated into the fabric of our lives. We can do so much good with an intelligent awareness of how things actually are and operate.

Hopefully, you will be interested in learning more.

I've been working on a large scale article on money but as things unfold have decided to simply write about the situation. Having just read Secrets of the Temple, the politics of money are more in my mind. By politics of money I mean who benefits and who looses by the actions of government agencies.

Banksters work without guns but take wealth from borrowers

Here's one view, that I think accurate, of the current situation: the policy has been to create a “workout” time line for large banks to “earn” their way out of balance sheet problems.

The problem with this approach is, of course, that the Federal deficit basically funds the “earnings” of the banks. The FED provides new money that the banks can borrow at near 0% and the banks then buy Treasuries that pay higher interest rates. The “earnings” that the banks get from this “carry trade” process is achieved by the further indebtedness of the citizenry through the increased national here for full article
So, the banks are sitting on piles of borrowed money and buying financial paper (treasuries) to increase their wealth as a way to get out of the massive bad loans they have. But it's our money that they are borrowing and re-investing! In this way they take from the poorer tax filers and keep the interest income. Oh, and they do keep any money that comes in on old loans to boot.
My hope is that enough people will start to learn about how all this works. We are in the midst of a horrible situation: "... even when we adjust for inflation and normalize to population, this crisis is orders of magnitude larger than anything else in the past in financial terms, including the Great Depression. As much as we criticize actions taken, there are lots of worse conditions we could be in right now. The size of the financial system catastrophe is of historic proportions and we are still alive." here for details and here

I'll be posting more on this topic in the near future.